Functional Evaluation in Shoulder Disorders

that the strength of the rotator cuff muscles and are divided between resistance tests and tightness tests.

Rotator Cuff: What is it and Which Muscles make it up?

The rotator cuff is a functional anatomical complex, consisting of four muscles and their respective tendons, which takes place at the shoulder level, more specifically establishing a particular relationship with the bone components of the glenohumeral joint.

Arranged to form a sort of sleeve around the aforementioned joint, the four muscles of the rotator cuff are: supraspinatus (discussed in this article), infraspinatus, teres minor and subscapularis.

A feature common to all rotator cuff muscles and worthy of mention is that they originate at the level of the scapula (each in different specific locations) and insert themselves on the proximal portion of the humerus (each in a different area).

For further information: Rotator Cuff: Anatomy, Physiology and Accidents and a decrease in the resistance to the thrust received.

The Jobe test evaluates the supraspinatus muscle, but sometimes the assessment of muscle weakness can be made difficult by painful symptoms (figure).

External Rotation Test Against Adduction Resistance

The patient placed in front of the examiner with the abducted shoulder, in neutral rotation and elbow flexed at 90 °, performs a thrust in external rotation against the resistance offered by the examiner.

This test evaluates the infraspinatus muscle (figure).

Patte's test

This test, like the previous one, also evaluates the infraspinatus muscle.

The patient with the shoulder abducted by 90 ° and the elbow flexed must perform an external rotation against resistance offered by the examiner placed behind (figure on the left).

Lift-off Test

With the hand of the shoulder to be evaluated placed behind the back, the subject must push back against resistance.

This test evaluates the health of the subscapularis muscle and, in the event of a lesion of the latter, the hand is unable to give any thrust.

  • Functional evaluation in shoulder pathologies;
  • Test for the long head of the biceps - Test for the glenoid labrum;
  • Test for instability.
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